NMA Calls for Withdrawal of Infectious Disease Bill

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The Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, on Saturday, requested for the withdrawal of the infectious disease bill (Control of Infectious Diseases Bill).

NMA President, Dr. Francis Faduyile, and General Secretary, Dr. Olumuyiwa Odusote, the medical practitioners said in a statement that it was important to withdraw the bill and revise it to clear any doubts surrounding it.

Whilst praising the leadership of the House and the health-related committees, the medical practitioners also called for broader consultation with stakeholders to ensure that the country’s law will be implementable and not at variance with the constitution.

“NMA is not embarrassed by the public outcry against specific provisions of the Bill, as such is one of the hallmarks of democracy and welcomes the resolve of the House to subject the Bill to public hearing.

“We further urge the withdrawal of the Bill entirely and redrafting to remove any existing and future doubts in the people.”

The doctors also complained about the scarcity of PPEs, pointing out that doctors and health workers are not equipped with adequate PPEs.

They admonished members and frontline healthcare workers in the country to refrain from attending to suspected or confirmed cases of COVD-19 if they are not clad in the appropriate PPE in the interest of the personnel and their families, and the wider society.

The statement also noted that “The Presidential Task Force, PTF, must direct the Federal Ministry of Health and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, and other employers of doctors and health workers, to make arrangements for the provision of an adequate supply of PPEs at the point and time of need in the campaign against COVID-19.”

They charged the PTF and NCDC to devise the swiftest feasible solution to resolve the present challenges confronting the sector, including incorporating the approved private sector laboratories that already have established specimen pick up and transport modalities.

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